In the President's Secret Service
Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents They Protect
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Never before has a journalist penetrated the wall of secrecy that surrounds the U.S. Secret Service, that elite corps of agents who pledge to take a bullet to protect the president and his family. After conducting exclusive interviews with more than one hundred current and former Secret Service agents, bestselling author and award-winning reporter Ronald Kessler reveals their secrets for the first time.
Secret Service agents, acting as human surveillance cameras, observe everything that goes on behind the scenes in the president’s inner circle. Kessler reveals what they have seen, providing startling, previously untold stories about the presidents, from John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson to George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as well as about their families, Cabinet officers, and White House aides.
Kessler portrays the dangers that agents face and how they carry out their missions–from how they are trained to how they spot and assess potential threats. With fly-on-the-wall perspective, he captures the drama and tension that characterize agents’ lives.
In this headline-grabbing book, Kessler discloses assassination attempts that have never before been revealed. He shares inside accounts of past assaults that have put the Secret Service to the test, including a heroic gun battle that took down the would-be assassins of Harry S. Truman, the devastating day that John F. Kennedy was killed in Dallas, and the swift actions that saved Ronald Reagan after he was shot.
While Secret Service agents are brave and dedicated, Kessler exposes how Secret Service management in recent years has betrayed its mission by cutting corners, risking the assassination of President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and their families. Given the lax standards, “It’s a miracle we have not had a successful assassination,” a current agent says.
Since an assassination jeopardizes democracy itself, few agencies are as important as the Secret Service–nor is any other subject as tantalizing as the inner sanctum of the White House. Only tight-lipped Secret Service agents know the real story, and Ronald Kessler is the only journalist to have won their trust.
From the Hardcover edition.
In the President's Secret Service
A very disappointing book on what could be a fascinating subject. It is more a collection of anecdotes and gripes apparently culled from interviews with agents than a real investigative look at the agency. It reads more like a gossip column than a serious literary effort. If you like Enquirer type reporting you may enjoy this book. If you want a serious look into the Secret Service, look elsewhere.
In The President
This book was extremely disappointing. The description promoted that it would include stories about our presidents so I expected an interesting look inside the daily lives of the presidents but other than a few anecdotal stories (that came across more like gossip or complaints from disgruntled ex-agents) it was more about how poorly the Secret Service is treated by "management" and how much better the FBI was treated than Secret Service. Secret Service agents were quoted as liking or not liking certain presidents and random tidbits and pieces of gossip about the presidents. If you want to hear a bunch of wining about how underpaid and mistreated the Secret Service is, this is your book. Otherwise, don't waste your time.
Started out interesting then turned into Secret Service bashing.